U.K. stocks were sharply lower on Monday as investors fretted over a resurgence of coronavirus cases in the United Kingdom and elsewhere in Europe.
With new virus cases rising by at least 6,000 per day, British Health Minister Matt Hancock said on Sunday a second national lockdown was one possible step to curb the spread of the coronavirus. “I don’t rule it out, I don’t want to see it,” Hancock told the BBC.
The benchmark FTSE 100 slumped 192 points, or 3.2 percent, to 5,815 after losing 0.7 percent on Friday.
Banks were among the worst hit amid reports that several global banks moved large sums of allegedly illicit funds over nearly two decades. Standard Chartered fell 5.2 percent and Lloyds Banking Group gave up 5.8 percent.
HSBC Holdings lost 5.5 percent on reports the Asia-focused lender could be a possible candidate for inclusion in China’s ‘unreliable entity list.
Rolls-Royce Holdings plunged 8.6 percent after the aero-engine maker detailed a plan to raise up to 2.5 billion pounds to strengthen its balance sheet.
Informa, the world’s largest exhibitions group, tumbled 3.5 percent after posting a half-year loss and cutting its FY revenue outlook.
On the data front, U.K. manufacturers downgraded their outlook for next year as they see no evidence of a V-shaped recovery from the coronavirus-driven pandemic, according to a survey conducted by Make UK and business advisory firm BDO released today.
Despite improvements in output and orders from record lows, manufacturers reduced their investment plans, the manufacturing outlook survey showed.
U.K. house prices increased at the fastest pace in four years in September driven by higher demand for larger homes, separate data published by the property website Rightmove revealed.
House price inflation advanced to 5 percent from 4.6 percent in August. This was the fastest growth since September 2016. House prices gained 0.2 percent month-on-month in September, reversing a 0.2 percent drop in August.
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